We had the good fortune of connecting with Sophia McGovern and we’ve shared our conversation below.
Hi Sophia, what do you attribute your success to?
Little Somethings Press: A Collection of Small Writings, or LSP for short, is a handmade publication somewhere between a zine and a literary journal. Flash fiction, flash memoir, poetry, and visual art from around the world are housed in its pages. The most important factor behind LSP’s success is the power of handmade literature. The intensive process brings craft and care into every step, creating a community of roughly a hundred creatives across seven countries. Of the hundreds of heartfelt submissions, the 30 most reflective of the themes of identity, family, grief, and resilience are selected for each issue. Every book is made with upcycled materials, like Trader Joe’s bags, used cardboard, and old wrapping paper. After being sewn by hand, packaged, and stamped, they are sent out to readers and brought to life through readings.
Can you open up a bit about your work and career? We’re big fans and we’d love for our community to learn more about your work.
My journey to teaching and running my own press was fuelled by the power of storytelling. I saw stories strengthen communities in many fields, including global health projects in Uganda, health education in India, voter registration campaigns, literary events, and the classroom. This pushed me to create more spaces where voices can be heard. For me, the classroom and the page were the most powerful. Because of this, I am proud to publish creatives from around the globe and foster self-expression in schools. I work to bring a diverse canon, creative projects, and zines into my English Language Arts curriculum. Here, the roles of teacher and editor bleed together.
If you had a friend visiting you, what are some of the local spots you’d want to take them around to?
A guest of mine should get ready for books, biking, hiking, and fresh veggies. What better way to experience Phoenix than to support the one and only Palabras Bilingual Bookstore? Phoenix and Tempe also have miles and miles of car-free bike trails that wrap around water features, golf courses, canals, and desert washes, so any guest would be taking a two-wheel tour of the city. A great stop on this tour would be the outdoor farmer’s markets in Mesa, Phoenix, Scottsdale, Gilbert, and many others. Here you can support more locals and treat yourself. Since we are in the Valley of the Sun, there are tons of mountains and wildernesses to choose from for a nature walk or more intensive hike. For an after-hike meal, my favorite eateries are the vegetarian havens of Green New American Vegetarian and Earth Plant Based Cuisine.
Shoutout is all about shouting out others who you feel deserve additional recognition and exposure. Who would you like to shoutout?
Without the love and support from the Phoenix literary community, Little Somethings Press would not exist. Rosemarie Dombrowski, Phoenix’s Poet Laureate, took me under her wing. Through her mentorship, I met the brilliant creators of Four Chambers Press, Rinky Dink Press, and Cardboard House Press’s Cartonera Collective. Through them, I learned the process of publication, the power of handmade literature, and the healing force of bookmaking. My lady writers Megan Atencia and Kat Hofland are a foundational part of my writing community too and are always there for a quick workshop or de-stress session. So, thank you all for fuelling and fostering the passions of the valley.
Facebook: Sophia McGovern